Today’s healthcare sector faces unprecedented challenges. With an ageing population, a need for greater understanding of complex conditions, and more people requiring interventions from multiple healthcare services, keeping track of patient outcomes is critical.
As the largest employer of public sector workers in the UK, to say the NHS has a complex infrastructure would be a vast understatement. The fact is that at every level of the NHS, operational efficiency is absolutely key to delivering the right treatment to the right patients at the right time.
NHS Digital is the national information and technology partner to the health and social care system. The remit of NHS Digital is the intelligent use of data and technology to connect every strand of the NHS and ensure that resources are available as and when patients need them. To do this, NHS Direct needs IT partners with the technology, knowledge and expertise to support its essential goals.
When NHS Digital seeks an IT partner, it needs providers with a deep understanding of the value technology can bring to people’s lives.
But in times of tightened budgets, any IT solution needs to be highly cost effective, enabling the NHS to do as much as possible within its budget framework.
Protecting patient data
To monitor patients effectively at every stage of their interactions with health providers, NHS Digital needs a robust approach to safeguarding its data. It’s vital to be able to protect patient records from security breaches and unauthorised access.
However, to keep track of patient outcomes, that data needs to be easily accessed and shared between the clinicians, practitioners and agencies that are involved in a patient’s care.
Add to the mix the need to keep costs down while delivering high standards of healthcare, and it’s clear that data handling for the NHS is no easy task.
This is where Insight comes in, through its partnership with Splunk. As a provider which understands that no business stands still, Insight is well placed to work in the most dynamic and changeable of sectors – like healthcare.
By monitoring all data sources across an organisation, Splunk’s data security solutions are able to identify threats to that organisation’s security and take proactive steps to respond to any breaches that could cause damage.
Working with NHS Direct, Insight provides the reassurance that Splunk technology protects the privacy of patient information while enabling the legitimate exchange of data that underpins an integrated treatment plan.
Predict, prevent and cure
When Health Secretary, Matt Hancock, launched his vision – Prevention is better than cure – he confirmed that prevention would be at the very heart of the NHS long-term plan.1 Under these plans, new, predictive approaches will increasingly develop the role of digital technology in preventative medicine.
The initiative recognises the potential of technology to offer targeted and precise health advice to individuals so they can take action early, thus avoiding some of the most common, yet debilitating health conditions.
As Matt Hancock explains, “A focus on prevention and predictive medicine isn’t just the difference between life and death, it’s the difference between spending the last 20 years of your life fit and active, or in constant pain from a chronic condition.”
Shifting from individual treatments to a holistic view of the whole individual calls for a better way to exchange patient information. Splunk’s solutions can facilitate real-time data exchanges from mobile devices, healthcare systems and laboratories, so that physicians can make decisions based on current data.
With a secure way to share data, NHS trusts are not only able to treat illnesses more effectively, but they can also promote good health practices and empower patients to take charge of their own wellbeing.
Insight can help organisations gain operational and business insights from their data, providing real-time visibility of the processes taking place day-to-day. This operational information identifies any specific process which might not be running at full capacity, slowing operations down.
With this knowledge, Insight can locate the details and take action to address any issues before they have a negative impact on an organisation.
Having worked with NHS trusts, helping them to drive efficiencies, Insight has helped deliver savings of around £220,000 a year, by using the Splunk platform to optimise operations.
Insight also adds value by working with partners like Splunk to train individuals within its client organisations to use dashboards, reporting and analytics. With this support, organisations benefit from having power users of new technology in their workforce, going above and beyond the basics and getting deeper insight from the IT to transform their operations.
With the ability to protect patient data, support the preventative health agenda and streamline operations, Insight and its partners present the NHS with a credible opportunity to deliver better patient outcomes while driving costs down.
To find out more about how Insight can deliver integrated healthcare solutions from Splunk, contact us at NHSSolutions@insight.com